UNITED STATES NEWS

Alabama can enforce a ban on gender-affirming care for transgender minors, appeals court rules

Jan 11, 2024, 3:11 PM

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama can begin immediately enforcing a ban outlawing the use of puberty blockers and hormones to treat transgender people under 19, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday, granting the state’s request to stay a preliminary injunction that had blocked enforcement of the 2022 law.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had previously ruled that the injunction should be vacated, but the decision had been effectively on hold while families with transgender children asked the full appellate court to reconsider the decision. The Thursday order will allow the ban to take effect while the full court decides whether it will revisit the decision.

The state Attorney General Steve Marshall called the order a “significant victory for our country, for children and for common sense.”

“The physical and psychological safety of our children can now be better protected from these untested and life-altering chemical and surgical procedures through the implementation of the Alabama Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act,” Marshall said.

Lawyers representing parents of transgender adolescents who challenged the ban said the decision will “hurt parents and children in the state.”

“Alabama’s transgender healthcare ban will harm thousands of transgender adolescents across the state and will put parents in the excruciating position of not being able to get the medical care their children need to thrive,” read a joint statement from GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Human Rights Campaign.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signed the Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act into law in 2022, making it a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison for doctors to treat people under 19 with puberty blockers or hormones to help affirm their gender identity.

At least 22 states have now enacted laws restricting or banning gender-affirming medical care for transgender minors, and many of them face lawsuits or blocked enforcement. Courts have issued mixed rulings, with the nation’s first law, in Arkansas, struck down by a federal judge who said the ban violated the due process rights of young transgender people and their families.

Attorneys representing Tennessee transgender teens and their families have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block the state’s ban on gender-affirming care for minors that a lower court allowed to go into effect. The court is expected to decide later this year if it will hear the case.

Four families with transgender children ranging in ages 12 to 17 challenged the Alabama law as an unconstitutional violation of equal protection and free speech rights, as well as an intrusion into family medical decisions. The U.S. Department of Justice joined their lawsuit, seeking to overturn the law.

U.S. District Judge Liles Burke, nominated to the court by then-President Donald Trump in 2017, ruled when issuing the preliminary injunction that Alabama had produced no credible evidence to show that transitioning medications are “experimental.” Alabama appealed the decision to the 11th Circuit. The challenge to the Alabama ban is scheduled to go to trial early this year.

United States News

Associated Press

Cooler temps and rain could help corral blazes that forced thousands to fee New Mexico village

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Cooler weather — and the chance of rain — could bring some relief this week to firefighters battling blazes in southern New Mexico that killed one person, damaged hundreds of structures and forced thousands to evacuate. Strong wind pushed the larger of two wildfires into the mountain village of Ruidoso, forcing […]

9 hours ago

Associated Press

Immigrant families rejoice over Biden’s expansive move toward citizenship, while some are left out

HOUSTON (AP) — Hundreds of thousands of immigrants had reason to rejoice when President Joe Biden unveiled a highly expansive plan to extend legal status to spouses of U.S. citizens but, inevitably, some were left out. Claudia Zúniga, 35, married in 2017, or 10 years after her husband came to the United States. He moved […]

9 hours ago

Associated Press

Early blast of heat and humidity leaves millions sweltering across the US

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — A blast of heat and humidity in the Midwest and Northeast days before the official start of summer put a wet blanket on outdoor activities from festivals to sports camps as officials urged people to take precautions. Cities that opened cooling centers this week advised that Wednesday’s Juneteenth holiday means some […]

9 hours ago

This photo provided by Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department shows a monolith near Gass Peak, Ne...

Associated Press

Gleaming monolith pops up in Nevada desert, the latest in a series of quickly vanishing structures

Jutting out of the rocks in a remote mountain range near Las Vegas, the monolith's reflective surface imitates the vast desert landscape surrounding the mountain peak where it has been erected.

12 hours ago

Associated Press

California man charged with killing gay college student takes the stand

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A California man charged with killing a gay University of Pennsylvania student in an alleged hate crime six years ago testified Tuesday about how the two men connected on social media and went to a park. It was the last time the victim was seen. Samuel Woodward, 26, took the […]

14 hours ago

President Joe Biden turns to the others on the dais after speaking during an event marking the 12th...

Associated Press

Half a million immigrants could eventually get US citizenship under a sweeping new plan from Biden

President Joe Biden ordered expansive election-year action Tuesday to offer potential citizenship to hundreds of thousands of immigrants without legal status in the U.S.

14 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s how to be worry-free when your A/C goes out in the middle of summer

PHOENIX -- As Arizona approaches another hot summer, Phoenix residents are likely to spend more time indoors.

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Alabama can enforce a ban on gender-affirming care for transgender minors, appeals court rules